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Multinational Company Global Management Roles – Irish Subsidiary Management Influence and U.S. Corporate Perspective

November 7, 2018 @ 1:00 pm - 2:00 pm

Speaker(s): Johanna Clancy

Affiliation: Innovation and Structural Change

Organised by: Whitaker Institute

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The multinational company (MNC) represents a complex architecture of hierarchical and network-based structures that are continuously in transition, with the corporate HQ controlling and mediating their foreign subsidiary networks mainly through allocation of formal mandates and roles. This research considers the growing allocation of global responsibilities across the MNC network and how this affects the corporate HQ-subsidiary relationship. Subsidiaries in key locations are increasingly incorporating global dimensions to mandates in the form of regional management mandates or co-parenting activities (Pla-Barber et al. 2017), through individual managers operating virtually in key global roles out of the subsidiary. These individuals act as high-level intermediaries, often travelling between corporate HQ, regional HQ and subsidiaries (Patriotta, 2013). We explore the strategies that high-level intermediaries incorporate to balance global and local demands between corporate HQ and subsidiaries. Although these individuals operate in ‘corporate’ positions, they may have local political biases, often affecting decision-making and how they share knowledge (Dorrenbacher and Gammelgaard, 2016). As such, these individuals play an important part in determining the flow of knowledge and development of certain initiatives across the MNE. This is particularly important from an Irish perspective, given our reliance on MNC location decisions.


This is one of a series of seminars in the Whitaker Ideas Forum. Johanna will be representing the Innovation and Structural Change research cluster.